It was a blowly mizzly pishy rotten day today with no rugby (that i wanted to watch) so I amused myself by digging out an old Intel PIII box. The box in question is of known origin (ie i assembled it) There are some dark recesses where geriatric kit is still used and I wanted to see would it work.
Spec: PIII 600Mhz EB (133MHz bus and 256K L2 on die) running on an Asus CUSL2 815e motherboard, in standard fettle (no over clocking) with 512Mb memory (2x128 and 1x256MB) 40Gb IDE HD.
I popped a clean copy of XP Pro SP2 onto it and the proceed to do a clean install of
the Basic V801 client which although it took an AGE to uncompress (11Mins!) installed without a hitch or complaint in 7mins
After the initial fiddling around to get the client configured, starting and stopping was not startling... 98s from launch to password and then another 15s to the client totally open. Opening a mail file (inbox loaded with around 100 mails, all docs around 1000) was predictably sluggish around 90s, but once open performance was adequate without breaking any records.
Having done all that I copied out the mail file ... un-installed the basic client and did an install of the full client, (ie everything that was possible was installed)
This took 35mins to unpack !!! and the install itself was 16mins. I configed the client,I copied my test mail file back in, pointed the client at it, configed up the sametime to talk to BleedYellow and then opened the client expecting it to load in a time that would allow me to make and drink 2 cups of coffee, vacuum the house and wash the car. I was pleasantly surprised when it opened in 2mins 45s, working with it was a bit more of a chore, things like opening and sending mail took 3-5 seconds longer that the basic client (on a decent box these were instantaneous) and when typing there was occasionally a lag where nothing happened and then suddenly you got 4 or 5 words all in a rush. There was considerable disk IO to begin with so I left it for 30 mins (to do the the vacuuming before divorce was mentioned) and when I returned the disk IO had dropped back to normal background behavior and subsequent stop and starts of the client had between 10 and 15 mins of rabid disk activity that settled down and allow almost-normal working.
The productivity pack worked well once it had started ... IBM could have been more creative with their splash screen, a few jokes, a risque picture or two .. would have been nice as would perhaps some background music :) Again it suffered from a period of intense disk activity which settled down and normal service resumed.
A word of warning DO NOT USE ITUNES while running Notes on an old machine I did and both just die! However iSeries Client Access, TN5250 telent, splurd and even an monster exHell spreadsheet worked within acceptable levels .... just ... with the v8.0.1 client running in the background.
One thing that was rather annoying was the "you have new mail" which when it popped up froze everything for perhaps 10s. No amount of clicking would make the ***** thing go away and then poof everything was back to normal.
All the extra bells and whistles worked as expected... Threads in your inbox took a heartbeat longer to expand and contract.
Does anyone know if the productivity tools run in the same thread pool as the client if active, cos if you have the notes client active or the productivity tools active when you start the other, the start time noticeably improves, so you really only take and excessive "yawn" period where you can memorize the licensing blurp on the splash screen when you start either for the first time.
While I would not recommend you rolling out v801 onto an entire organization that uses old kit, if you do have the odd poor benighted soul in some dark corner that needs the client and all the whizzbangery, I think there is no overpowering reason not to install it. Yes it will be slow, yes it does make your HD sound like a F1 at full revs for a while, but it is workable.